GARY – Foster Success is launching a new college readiness program in Lake County and has created a position to oversee it. The Fostering Higher Education Program is designed to guide young people in foster care as they transition from high school into college. The program is being hosted in collaboration with Washington State University and the Jim Casey Youth Opportunity Initiative.
Approximately 20 percent of those in foster care who graduate from high school attend college, compared with 60 percent of high school graduates overall. Those who do attend college are more likely to drop out. In fact, The National Foster Youth Institute says less than three percent of students in foster care graduate from a four year college.
“This two-year program will offer individualized one-on-one advising sessions with an Education Advocate,” said Foster Success President and CEO Dr. Maggie Stevens. “It’s designed to give participants personal attention and guidance over a long period of time so that they can succeed when they go to college.”
Fostering Higher Education also will provide guided programming designed to aid in the transition and acclimation to higher education. It will help identify and overcome barriers that can impede higher education success for students in foster care.
The organization has hired Tiffany Powell as Assistant Director of Outreach and Engagement to oversee the program. Powell works with students as the bridge between high school completion and the successful transition to college life.Powell has an extensive 20 year career in higher education admissions and collegereadiness/preparedness, serving in both the higher education and nonprofitcommunities. She is a graduate of Ball State University, where she received a Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations. Powell is involved with the Indiana Association of College Admission Counseling (INACAC) where she currently serves as the Educational Calendar Committee Chair and recently received the Dorothy Cheesman Award from the Indiana College Association for College Admission Counseling, Inc.
Foster Success is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization that provides financial, educational and social support to foster care youth at a most critical time – when they are about to or have already transitioned out of the foster care system, most often with no family or economic support. Each year in Indiana, about 500 youth age out of the foster care system and into our communities. More information about Foster Success can be found at www.fostersuccess.org, on Facebook, on LinkedIn and on Twitter @FosterSuccessUS.